This is edited info from David Swanson, director of WorldBeyondWar.org
"The United States is alone among wealthy nations in lacking basic health coverage as a human right for all. This prevents proper planning and prevention, and leaves people without a doctor to call, and without the ability to afford healthcare if they could get it...
The United States is a similar outlier when it comes to lacking paid sick leave and financial security. Millions of people cannot afford to stay home; if they do they’ll soon have no home to stay home to. Others already have no home to stay home to. The U.S. reality reinforces the ideology that established it, which holds that we’re not all in this together...
The U.S. government is so corrupted that it can dump money on banks but not on human beings. Any crisis is an opportunity to attack what’s left of the safety net, not an occasion to make use of it. What’s needed is a guaranteed income, paid leave, expanded Social Security, and forgiveness of debt. But all that comes oozing out of the swamp are banker bailouts, threats to Social Security, and excuses...
A lot of people have gone to a lot of trouble to try to stop Bernie Sanders’ campaign, which promises a platform including enhanced Medicare for All, a Green New Deal, and taxation of the wealthy and corporations and financial transactions. How would it look to have to enact some of these policies as emergency measures right in the middle of trying to destroy Bernie’s campaign...
Failing to take the biggest problems seriously is a well-established habit. Coronavirus seems different to some people. By shifting a bit of pocket change from billionaires to people who need to stay home from work, millions of lives could be protected from risk. Such a calculation is unfamiliar to ethics classes in U.S. academia, where the question is always whether one should save lives by murdering a smaller number of lives. But it’s also unfamiliar to the U.S. public, media, and government. Failing to invest in a Green New Deal puts billions of lives at risk. Failure to rein in the nuclear weapon profiteers does too. The lack of a decent healthcare system is a long-established killer. Poverty and homelessness and mass-incarceration are long-accepted horrors, made virtually invisible by their normalization, deadly and devastating though they are. What’s surprising is the extent to which anyone is taking coronavirus seriously, not the failure to take it seriously enough..."
And these are from People's Assembly in the UK:
"3. Workers should be allowed to work from home where possible. Introduce a mortgage and rent freeze for the duration of the crisis for those workers denied their full pay.
4. Extend statutory sick pay to all workers. Following successful pressure on the government to give sick pay from day one for those affected by the virus. Statutory sick pay should be uplifted to a living wage.
5. Pensioners on low-incomes to be eligible for one-off grants to cover food, fuel and travel costs.
6. Scrap the assessment period for Universal Credit and make payments immediately. Sanctions for benefit claimants who don’t attend appointments should be scrapped. Universal Credit payments should be topped up to account for extra costs of preparing for virus and moving to shut down.
7. Price controls to be introduced on essential medical equipment and drugs. There must be no hiking of prices on masks, ventilators, isolation units, beds, basic supplies like soap and hand towels, as well as drugs to combat bacterial complications etc.
8. Private hospitals to be put under the management of the NHS. Essential equipment owned by private companies should be pooled as part of the overall effort; private hospital beds should be treated as public.
9. Cleaners are a vital frontline, as are NHS staff. They should both be given an immediate pay boost to attract more cleaners, nurses, hospital porters and administrators. All workers should have the protective clothing necessary in line with TUC guidelines.
10. No scapegoating of Chinese people, Italians, immigrants or anyone else. An emergency programme of aid and refugee resettlement should be initiated across Europe.
11. The outbreak must not be used as a pretext for clamping down on civil liberties. Frontline public sector workers, especially health workers, should be brought in at the highest level of decision making. The trade unions should be part of the conversation with civil servants and senior NHS staff."
So, might a larger scale problem from coronavirus lead, at last, to a national health care system in the USA? And a fundamental shift in UK society towards the left?
If we see a huge government organised, international effort to combat the virus, then what is the logic behind not having a similar level of effort to combat poverty, inequality, poor health and education levels, car pollution, environmental damage... and the corrupt nature of capitalism itself? Why let all those things ravage us?